Atonement: Scourge of Time

Matseb2611

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Thanks man. It is good to hear that you think the battle looks strategic. It's exactly what I'm hoping for the boss fights in this game to be like. And I sure have some nice ones coming up in Act 2 of the game. Hopefully the players won't find them too hard on normal difficulty. :D
 

Bonkers

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Really started to enjoy the play through, but I defeated the Chimera and none of the people in town are responding to the victory.  Here are some observations I wrote down as I played:

I noticed in the swamp that some of the tree tiles were cut off, and it looks like the foliage is sliced off without continuing into a full tree.  There is also an issue with transfers, since you don't seem to move the player one tile away from the entrance and exit of maps, so if I move left or right after transferring I am sent back the previous map.

Right now I can say the dialogue of the game feels nice and natural.  That isn't something I see very often with projects under development.  

The icon set with the atmosphere and the dark fantasy feel doesn't work since the RTP style is too saturated and colorful.  

Unfortunately I don't seem to be able to progress past the chimera battle.  Reporting back to town everyone is still asking me to kill it.  I saw some other people in the swamp, but I only actually interacted with a dead body for a potion.

I am starting to have the idea of skills upfront grow on me.  The seldom potions that increase energy by 5 hidden around are a good idea that is making me explore more, but the battles themselves aren't encouraging me to grind when I have so little money and there are a large amount of status items to buy.  I attempted to upgrade my equipment, but the stores have basically the same stock as the characters.

I've enjoyed Nail, and for the atypical bad ass he isn't flat or boring.  He seems motivated by his freedom, though I don't know why he was being detained to begin with nor was it explained.  The paladin is rather understanding and nurturing for a pointed babysitter.  Everyone seems to respect Nail, and ultimately caves into his decisions though they admit they are rash and impulsive.  Anrid doesn't seem to be a big player in battle, as her elemental resist feature is never needed from what I experienced, but it is one of the higher costing skills she can use at first.  Even the witch fight didn't force me to use it to reduce damage, and seems to only function on herself.

Kaden is a completely different type of fighter from Nail, and has a much more regal feel to be him.  They seem to get along well for being total polar opposites.  

I believe you did a good job with characterization of the brothers, but the paladin Anrid falls a bit short with her "Nail, don't you do the thing.  Oh Nail!  You're making us do the thing again!  You are a wild card. I am going to chew the scenery some more.  I exist!"  If she didn't have the capacity to revive and heal I'd wonder why she was along at all.

I read the books, but I am still confused from the lore as the info dump didn't really do much but put names in my face.  Could you maybe make it illustrated somewhat to show some of the named characters you are referencing in the world?

Overall for 30 mins spent playing I am very pleased.  I'll attempt to go further with it, but I must have missed an event somewhere in the swamp.  Also the "We need to go around" event didn't trigger until the second visit to that first map.  
 

Matseb2611

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Heya man. Many thanks for all this feedback.

Do you remember which trees in the forest were cut off? I probably missed a few spots when mapping it out.

So it seems I might have to de-saturate the icons some more, to change the transfers, and to add more NPC dialogue in regard to the Chimera battle. I did have a few guards comment on it, but maybe I should put more of it.

Yeah, there'll be a lot more of those items that increase max energy as the game progresses, so hopefully knowing all the skills a character can learn helps to let the players decide who to give priority to when upgrading. I haven't included all that many of them in this first act as I wanted the player to get all their characters first. And perhaps things like money I still need to balance a bit better, as I had some other people mention about its shortage as well.

It's actually completely optional to go after the Chimera (it's just a sidequest). The main quest is to go and find the main villain who is supposedly in the forest as well.

Hehe. Yeah, perhaps it's a bit unusual how Anrid tolerates what Nail does despite arguing with him so much. There'll be a bit of her backstory revealed in Act 2 that will hopefully explain why she is kind of intolerant of the 'wildcard' people who don't do things by the rules, though at the same time she is also conflicted, because being a paladin, she tries to give others the benefit of a doubt and to show compassion. 

In regard to the skills, yeah, there are a few that still need balancing. I've had quite a few people actually point out Anrid's elemental shield not being so good for its cost. I've decided to extend it for 4 turns instead of 3, though still not sure if that fits the cost. I might increase the %ge benefit it gives depending on further feedback. Kanden's sturdy guard skill was another one that felt useless, so I changed that too, so instead it gives a small Def boost rather than a boost to Guard command.

Illustrations for the books is a nice idea. I'll see what I can do there.

Thanks again for the feedback and I look forward to hearing more if you decide to get further. I think the 'We need to go around' dialogue only pops up if you approach that area, but I am hoping the forest isn't so confusing to navigate through. If so, I might make some small alterations to it, so the path is a bit more clear.
 

Bonkers

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Okay, gave it another shot and completed Nail's quest for the demo.  I also gave Elleria's a shot and finished hers.

I started to play the other scenario, and I defeated Nail though nothing changed. =(

 

Elleria is a very nice character.  Her answer of whether she wants to kill Nail or not is perfect.

Really great job on the dialogue.  

 

The Bandit leader seems mistaken.  His shack is solid stone.  That's a damn nice shack.

 

Elleria is not overly violent and blood thirsty.  She actually tries to reason with people.

I liked the small snippet of exposition before her bed time, that was nice.  Now I know a bit more about the bodyguard and his people without it being in one of the books

or forced in.

I love that she says "Thanks I already know this," to the shop keeper.  She has a bit more characterization than Nail.  I would put her in the paladin's place instead if I could. 

They have a better relationship going.

 

Bad choice of Words in the swamp.  "I reckon we should go around and outflank them."  I reckon?  When did she become southern?  She had no accent before this.

So far things have gotten interesting, I think it would be worth playing more of either story line.  

 

Her ability to levitate over obstacles adds more to her side of things.  Nail seems ill prepared compared to her and why he needs 4 to her 3 in terms of party size.

 

EDIT:  Forgot to mention this, but her pallet swap disguise was hilarious.  
 
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Matseb2611

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Thanks again for your feedback, man. I am glad you've enjoyed the character Elleria and her side of the story. It seems most people enjoyed her story much more than Nail's. Perhaps I need to develop him and his party a bit better in these early stages of the game.

Hehe, I sometimes tend to put in badly suited words in the dialogue without realising it. I'll change the word 'reckon' to something else. Thanks for pointing that out.

A question. You mentioned that nothing changed when you defeated Nail in Elleria's story. What did you think was going to change?

Hopefully you've enjoyed the game in general. I'm still looking for some more special playtesters. If you're interested in giving more feedback as the development of the game goes, I can add you to the list of people I'll be sending revisions of the demo to. I'll have act 2 done sometime in the next month and will be sending it only to those few people for feedback.
 

Matseb2611

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Haven't posted an update for a couple of weeks. Managed to get a lot of stuff done during this time, so here are the screenshots of all the new areas. Enjoy! Very soon I'm going to post some concept art of Meya and Habach as well.

Nail's team has come across an unusual location and it seems Nail knows something...





In a meantime Elleria's team has been having some crazy subterranean adventure...







Act 2 of the game is almost finished. Should be done in about a couple of weeks or so. :)
 

Alkorri

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Looks good. I'm looking forward to this :)

(I don't quite see doors on those jail cells? Are they supposed to open?)
 

Matseb2611

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Thanks Alkorri.

Hehe, those things are the doors. They're just pretty big. Or maybe the cells are just incredibly small, because the Promgans who own that place are cruel and mean (and you shall find out why). :)
 

Matseb2611

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A huge update, guys, since I've finished making Act 2 of the game this week and already started playtesting it.

First of, I've made a short crappy teaser video of some of the highlights from it. Those lucky special testers will get to experience it in just a couple of days. Good news is that I'm still in need of more special playtesters.





Next is more concept art by Ehcs - it's Meya and Habach, the final two protagonists (Habach is not quite to scale here, since he would be bigger than this). But don't go away yet, because we've still got Adesard to see soon, the big bad main villain anti-hero of the story. :D



And lastly for now a handful of more screenshots. These ones show the rundown Capital city of the game:



 

cabfe

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Act 2 already done? You're so quick at creating game!

(but please don't slow down, we'll get our hands on the game faster :) )
 

Matseb2611

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Thanks man. Yeah, it's been a pretty productive month. I admit on many of the days I couldn't stop myself from working on the game.

Since you've given a lot of useful feedback on Act 1, if you're up for testing Act 2 at any point, I can send it to you as well. :)
 

Alkorri

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Screenshots and art look good, Matseb! I can't wait :)
 

Matseb2611

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Thanks for the support, guys. I've just sent out PMs with the newest download links to all those of you who said would be interested in playtesting act 2.

To anyone else, if you are interested in giving feedback on the next act and you've given some feedback on act 1 already, just send me a PM. The more playtesters, the better. :)



Also, I've combined all the character art by Ehcs into teams. Only Adesard is missing so far. The final pic will have Nail's team on the left, Elleria's on the right, and Adesard in the centre facing forwards at the camera. :p



 

Matseb2611

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Thanks Shayoko. I am glad the female characters seem interesting to you. :)
 

Matseb2611

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Heya guys. Following on from some recent feedback, I've made a number of changes and improvements.

I've brought down the energy cost of many skills in the game, especially the high end skills, because it seems the levelling is happening slower than I initially anticipated, so I am hoping the players will reach each character's most expensive skill by roughly the end of Act 3, so that they'll have the whole of Act 4 to play around with all of their skills.

I've also been replacing many of the RTP icons with PVGames' ones and also finally decided to assign skills their own icons too.



Also, I've added a new item into the game, one that can heal all party members at once, though the amount healed is not overly high and I am expecting by late stages of the game this will be overshadowed by the 'Healing Wave' skill that some characters possess.



There have been a few other small changes, such as balancing of the difficulty of some bosses, as well as a slightly higher money reward from enemies and the sellable items they drop.

And now I'm going to get working on some new locations for Act 3. :D
 

Matseb2611

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All righty, so I kind of have managed to make two whole dungeons within just a week, so I've got a lot to show in this update.

The Fog Plains:





Whilst Nail's team has been traversing the above, Elleria's team has ventured into the Zelahaan Swamp:



And the temple in it:



I've got way too many screenshots of this place. As you can probably tell, I've been really enjoying making it. In fact, this has probably been my favourite area to design so far! More screenshots inside the spoiler.





And a video sample:
 

Alkorri

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Matseb, you're a game making machine! You should livestream the process one of these days ;)
 

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That's a cool looking dungeon you made there!

I wish I could make progress on my game as fast as you do. I'll definitely manage to find time and play it when it's done.
 

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